From brawn to brains: manufacturing-KIBS interdependency

Elche, D., Consoli, D., Sánchez-Barrioluengo, M.
Regional Studies

This paper addresses two questions: Which manufacturing industries are associated with the inception of knowledge-intensive business services (KIBS)? Do cross-sectoral interdependencies between the two sectoral macro-domains exhibit geographical heterogeneity? We use a job multiplier approach using decadal employment data of 399 municipalities in Spain over the period 1981–2011. The main result is that only traditional supplier-dominated industries exhibit significant employment effects, both positive and negative, on KIBS. Coherent with the prior literature, this is most prominent in denser areas. Our findings draw attention to the specificities of user industries, and lend support to the notion that KIBS are a heterogeneous group of activities.